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Lifespan, Care New England say merger on track despite increased scrutiny from regulators

Despite tough scrutiny from state and federal regulators, the merger between two Providence, R.I.-based health systems — Lifespan and Care New England — is on track, WPRI reported Oct. 4.

The two organizations on April 26 filed a merger application with the Rhode Island health department and attorney general's office. The formal filing came after the two systems inked a definitive agreement to merge in February and filed their application for antitrust review with the Federal Trade Commission.

The health department, attorney general and FTC still need to sign off on the deal.

On Oct. 1, Lifespan and Care New England said they submitted revised merger applications to the Rhode Island attorney general's office and the state health department. The revised documents address some follow-up questions from the state.

Lifespan and Care New England also told WPRI that they have "submitted many thousands of pages of information to the FTC to date, with more to come," and, as of Oct. 1, they submitted documents addressing the agency's "most pressing questions" about the merger.

Despite the scrutiny from the state and FTC, Lifespan executives told bondholders in September that they still expect the merger to be approved by late this year or early 2022.

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